Selfless Heroes

Despite many games trying to help people learn to program, designing such a game is a difficult and challenging task. Some, like Minecraft, make the coding and logic elements an advanced topic for those wanting to get the most out of a game, whereas others, like Robocode, make the code an integral part of your success. This is what Selfless Heroes does, except rather than asking you to code a battle robot's AI, it asks the player to use code blocks to help its characters navigate through a 2D puzzle. This is why the game looks so ordinary, in a cute 2D top-down way, which may help it attract players who might otherwise be put off by the idea of writing code rather than twiddling a joystick.

To beat each level, you have to navigate your team of knights to a specific target in a set number of moves by writing a program using a set number of lines. Things start very simply, and each new command is introduced gently. The first level demands you only move your knights three steps in three lines, for example. You do this from a block-like coding environment, but you can impressively switch this to a text-based code editor to accomplish the same task. When you've constructed your algorithm, you need to hit the play button to execute your code in a single pass. If you succeed, there's even a testing phase to make sure it works every time – just like real code. If it fails, you try again. You can even save your solution and work on a new one or revisit old challenges when you learn new techniques. It's so much fun that most players won't even realize they're learning how to code.

Project Website

Teach people how to code, to test, and to iterate on their designs without them even knowing.

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